Reiko Rachel H.

Brother - Poem by Reiko Rachel H.

Ever since I could remember
I was always lying in bed next to you
At the hospital
I gave you my blood, born marrow,
some more blood
And there were other procedures
I don’t even know what they were

Mom and Dad would tell me that
I’m your Guardian Angel
That I was born to protect you
Because you weren’t strong enough
And that I was blessed with the ability
To help you live

What it was is that I was so called “my brother’s keeper”
I was the only genetic match in the family
Not Mom, not Dad, not even Sis
I later learned this as I grew up
They said I was a miracle child

I remember back in Osaka, at that house by the Lake
We had the worst thunderstorm
Mom and Dad were working late
Sis was off to studies with friends
You held me in your arms
With my head on your chest
So that I can only hear your heartbeat

I still don’t like to read books till this day
Because you would always read to me
Stories came alive when you read
With your calmest voice
Sometimes I would ask for the same stories
Over and over again
Just to memorize how you spoke the words

You taught me how to seek and hide
And taught me how to stay afloat in the water
You showed me how to use the fishing pole
You taught me how to ride a bike
Until you became too sick

Even with the worst of pain
You never lost your smile
You were the strongest person to me!
You have Mom’s wit and grace
You have Dad’s depth and peace
I always envied you
And I was ever so happy that
I was your keeper
I would have given you the last piece of my spare organ
Just to see you live another day

You told me how pretty my hair was
When Dad chopped my bangs too short
And I was crying
You said I should always be confident
And that I should remember I’ll always have love in me
And it’s true, I do

When your kidneys were finally failing
I gave you one of mine
They told me that I would always have to watch myself
You said that I was going to hate it when I go to college
No, I don’t hate it
I can only drink a few at parties
But that’s all I need

You should be proud of me
I finished college just like you told me to
I have a job that pays bills and all
Sis has a family and kids already
She’s always been smart, you knew that
I’ve been heartbroken few times
And broke some few times
Each time my heart grows stronger
I wish you were there to comfort me
But I always think of you

One sunny day you told me and Sis
That you didn’t want to take anything else from me anymore
That you were ready to go
That you wanted me to live my own life
Not just be your keeper

We spent the whole day with you at the Lake
They said you couldn’t get any worse
So we had taken you out to see the sun
The Lake, the trees, the birds, the winds
It was the best time we had in a long time

It was on a cold February morning
You left us
You just missed my birthday, Brother!
I hated you for it
More than anything else

You were in Mom’s arms
Dad couldn’t speak a word
That was the only time in my life
I saw tears in his eyes
I could tell that
He just lost the biggest part of him

They told me that
My last giving to you was
The wings
So that you can fly away
And wait for us in heaven

I’m no longer your Guardian Angel
You are mine now instead

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Poem Submitted: Monday, October 26, 2009

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